Single Packet of 100 Seeds
Many people don't know the secret ingredient in Peter Piper's peck of peppers: it includes Purple Beauty bell peppers (Capsicum annuum var. 'Purple Beauty'). The crisp, crunchy texture and sweet flavor add a colorful boost to salads, crudité trays, and other dishes.
Purple Beauty Bell Pepper Plant Characteristics
Purple Beauty peppers grow on plants 24 to 30 inches tall and 18-20 inches wide. The thick-skinned fruit are a boxy 3 1/2 to 4 1/2 inches, with three or four lobes, at maturity, which comes 60 to 70 days after planting. The peppers start out green, then turn white, before taking on purple stripes that eventually spread to turn the entire fruit a deep, rich purple color.
Purple Beauties are resistant to tobacco mosaic virus and bacterial leaf spot, but they may be susceptible to some leaf spot varieties. Pests usually don't bother them, but you might see aphids, slugs, pill bugs, or leaf miners near the pepper plants.
Purple Beauty Bell Pepper Plants Health Benefits and Uses
Low in calories, a 5 1/2-ounce serving of these peppers provide 130 percent of the recommended daily allowance (RDA) of Vitamin C, which is more than a serving of orange juice. They also contain Vitamins A and B6, folate, manganese, potassium, and copper. The purple color comes from anthocyanins, which help to reduce the risk for high blood pressure or low HDL (good) cholesterol.
To maintain the rich color, serve Purple Beauty bell peppers raw. However, this variety is also delicious cooked, when it magically changes to a lime green color. Try stuffing them with corn and whole grain with this recipe.
Saute 2 cups fresh corn kernels and 2 minced cloves garlic in 1 tablespoon butter until heated through. Mix it with 1 cup cooked faro, 1/3 cup ricotta cheese, 1/3 cup Parmesan cheese, 1/4 cup chopped green onions, 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme, and salt and pepper to taste.
Stuff the mixture into four seeded Purple Beauty peppers and set the peppers in a baking dish. Add 1/4 cup water to the bottom of the dish and bake the peppers for 25 minutes at 350 degrees. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons more Parmesan on top and broil until the cheese melts and turns golden brown.